strategic planning

Apr 4, 2017

10 Tips for Everyday Leaders – From It’s Good To Be King

Here are 10 leadership tips derived from my latest book

My latest book, It’s Good To Be King, just came out last week.

If you read it, it will help you to become a better leader.

If you’re a regular reader of my column, you already know that I aim to demystify what many management gurus make complex. This book is no exception. But, it is a departure from my standard fare.

It’s Good To Be King, is a leadership fable. In fact, you may want to consider it a bedtime story for modern day leaders. It is intended to be read and enjoyed by all kinds of leaders, including those who lead others in business, their communities, places of worship and volunteer organizations.

At the end of each chapter, I include some highlights (or takeaways) that you can derive from the allegorical story. There are over 60 tips intended to help everyday leaders. Here are 10 Tips for Everyday Leaders that you’ll find in the book:

1. Leadership makes or breaks every group and organization. Even prosperous enterprises cannot afford to rely on past success to assure enduring achievement.

2. Sometimes the need to lead is thrust upon you. When this happens, you have a choice: rise to the occasion or let someone else take charge and live with the consequences of that decision. Either way, a leadership void will always be filled.

3. Dedicate yourself to being open to learn new things. Sometimes leaders forget how to listen and learn. Don’t fall into that trap. You don’t have to have all of the answers all of the time.

4. Welcome those who can coach and teach. Even world-class athletes have coaches. Surround yourself with people who can make you better. Stated another way, accept your Yoda!

5. A foolish student laughs at knowledge. Begin to look backwards to inform your outlook for the future.

6. Gain a full understanding of where your organization or group is today and how it got there, so that you can define a path forward that is right for the current situation.

7. Leadership styles don’t discriminate. Poor leaders come in many shapes and sizes. Regardless of appearance, a poor leader will wreak havoc on any group or organization of which they are allowed to lead.

8. Deceitful leaders will destroy all trust within an enterprise or group. Once trust deteriorates, the culture becomes cut-throat as each team member begins to only focus on their own selfish interests.

9. Narcissistic leaders will ruin any esprit de corps that exists within a group. When the sense that we’re all “in this together” disappears, the best, most capable staff members begin to disappear, too.

10. The most talented among us want to be part of a team that shares the wealth. Be sure to the kind of leader that shares credit and promotes their team.

To close, this is just a small taste of the kinds of stuff that you’ll get out of the fable that underpins It’s Good To Be King. If you lead others, in any capacity, you will get something out of the book. It’s an easy and enjoyable read – one that I hope delights and enlightens. If you do grab a copy, please let me know what you think of it. Your feedback is sure to inform what I write about here.

NOTE: My Favorite Website Lately: TrikeJournal.com

Mar 2, 2017

How to Manage Business Transformation and Keep Your Sanity

Transformation work should be managed as a portfolio of projects and programs

Transforming a business is a lot like changing the tires on a truck while it is slamming down the highway at 90 miles an hour. The business world doesn’t stop just because you need to optimize your operations. No, your business still needs to be able to quickly respond to customer demands with high quality service delivery even when it’s in the midst of great transformation.

In fact, your business must be positioned to implement new capabilities and modify operations on a dime, regardless of what is going on behind the scenes. But, during times of significant change, it is not unusual for work (particularly that which crosses organizational boundaries) to get “hung-up” by resource constraints and political red tape. After all, no one wants to be the one that winds up with the short end of the stick!

How to Manage Business Transformation and Keep Your Sanity?

Clearly, organizing work into a portfolio of projects and programs reduces the obstacles to quick response by offering a different perspective on the way transformation results are achieved. Resource issues and ownership challenges are resolved during the project planning stage, when the executive leadership is present and involved in priority-setting and project sourcing. Done right, transformation project teams will be cross-functional in structure and share common “team-based” goals.

Of course, there are implications for driving change in this way, including:

1. An awareness program will be necessary to expose all of the firm’s personnel to this new way of organizing and performing transformation work within the business. Indeed, the approach will need to be demystified in order to eliminate any possibility of misinterpretations or perception of threat.

2. Portfolio-Based Project Management “Next Practices” must be selected and put into place in order to ensure the smooth implementation of this concept. You will want to be sure that the best approaches to transformation are being adopted to ensure the best possible results.

3. Staff must be properly trained in project management (and their role in project team participation). Like any new skill, your team will need to be taught the basics before you can expect them to perform.

4. The business should be deliberate in establishing a common project management language. In this way, your people won’t miss a beat as the concepts are being institutionalized.

5. Once in place, project management skills must be further developed and nurtured in order to fully realize the potential of this transformation management approach. Indeed, it just the beginning of this new philosophy. So, be prepared to continue to educate and coach.

To close, this new transformation model represents a dramatic departure for most businesses in the way in which the work environment is optimized (i.e., most businesses are organized by function and it is those functional boundaries that dictate the way that work is partitioned, assigned and adjusted over time). But, managing your transformation as a portfolio of projects may be the best way to drive change, while maintaining your sanity.

As always, please feel free to continue to drive the discussion by offering your ideas and comments below or reach-out to me directly. It’s an important topic that deserves more attention.

Jan 8, 2016

Hurry! 10 New Inc. Magazine Playbook Video Shorts About Visionary Leadership

Here are 10 New Inc. Magazine Playbook Video Shorts Based on My Column about Visionary Leadership:

How to Avoid Mediocrity and Build a Winning Business
3 Easy Ways to Boost Productivity at Work
3 Secrets Your IT Department Is Hiding From You
3 Things You Need to Know to Manage a Team of Superstars
3 Steps You Can Take Today to Be a Visionary Leader
3 Simple Ways to Make the Most of Your Best Workers
3 Ways to Save Your Business From the ‘Fog of War’
3 Ways to Inspire Your Employees to Greatness
3 Ways Leaders Can Set the Right Tone
3 Ways to Create a Transparent Work Setting

Be sure to reach out to me, if I can help your business with any of these concepts!

James M. Kerr is the Global Chair of the Culture Transformation Practice at N2Growth.  He is a consultant, organizational behaviorist, lecturer and Inc. columnist. He specializes in strategic planning, corporate transformation and organizational redesign. For over 25 years, Jim has forged a different type of consulting practice – one that does its engagements “with” its clients, instead of “to” them.

Whether helping larger organizations, like The Home Depot re-imagine its store operations, or advising smaller firms, like Blum Shapiro open up new markets, Jim has a reputation of making a difference.

A recognized thought leader , Jim continues to provide cutting edge solutions to his clients through a strong dedication to research and study. The Executive Checklist is Jim’s fourth business strategy book. His others include: The IRM Imperative (Wiley and Sons, 1989), Inside RAD (McGraw-Hill, 1991), and The Best Practices Enterprise (J. Ross Publishing, 2006). All are testaments to his commitment to helping leaders improve the ways in which they guide and shape their organizations.

NOTE: Current Fav Website: TrikeJournal.com

Apr 15, 2015

Re-imagining the city of the future

A century ago, as one immigrant population after another made its way to America in search of a better life, their destinations were our country’s burgeoning cities. This was where they could build their desired quality of life — they would make friends, educate their children in nearby schools and find good jobs there. Everything they needed to make their lives whole was there, beneath the steeples and spires and growing skylines…Read more:

Re-imagining the city of the future

Published in the Hartford Business Journal earlier in the week.  If you live, work or play in a city you just may get something out of this one!

Be sure to share it on Twitter, if you like it…Thanks.

Jan 21, 2015

New Microsoft Partners Showcase: My City of the Future Video

MicrosoftLogoI meant to get this out sooner to all of you…Watch:

New Microsoft Partners Showcase: My City of the Future Video

It”s only a few minutes, and I don’t look that great…But, there’s only so much to work with!

Enjoy it and pass it on, please!

Dec 20, 2014

Watch Out for Girls That Code

My Inc. Magazine Online column this week  covers the topic of gender inequality in the tech space, with:

GirlsWhoCode

We need to get working on this in the United States because if we don’t we will continue to lose girls who codeimportant jobs overseas.

So, please read, think, share and discuss…Watch Our for Girls That Code!

Thank You.

Dec 1, 2014

City of the Future Series Starts Today on Inc.

Let us promote and engage in a discussion about where we are heading as a society. This is the first of an 8-part series exploring the subject. city

City of the Future Series Starts Today on Inc.

Please be sure to follow it.  The series runs with a new article Monday through Friday, this week and next.

As always, your comments, likes and follows make me feel good!

So, please keep them coming….

Nov 15, 2014

New Book Trailer Up on YouTube

Please checkout my latest video on The Executive Checklist: youtube

New Book Trailer Up on YouTube

Share it so that everyone gets the chance to read the book!

Thanks!

Oct 17, 2014

Partner In Success Radio Interview

Listen to my Partner In Success Radio Interview – With host Denise Griffitts.

We talk about the book, cover some of the interesting case studies in it and describe some of the challenges that lie ahead for businesses today.

Check it out here

And, as always, pass it around.  Thanks!

Oct 14, 2014

I am a newly minted Inc.com Columnist

I am a newly minted Inc.com Columnist and will be publishing articles on a weekly basis on Inc.

You can find me here.Inc-Magazine-Logo

Please be sure to follow and like and share…I do appreciate all of your help and inspiration.

Thanks!

Copyright 2019 James M. Kerr       info@executive‑checklist.com       800‑944‑4662